Effects of Biofeedback on Control and Generalization of Nasalization in Typical Speakers Purpose The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of biofeedback on control of nasalization in individuals with typical speech. Method Forty-eight individuals with typical speech attempted to increase and decrease vowel nasalization. During training, stimuli consisted of consonant-vowel-consonant (CVC) tokens with the center vowels ... Research Note
Research Note  |   October 01, 2016
Effects of Biofeedback on Control and Generalization of Nasalization in Typical Speakers
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Elizabeth S. Heller Murray
    Boston University, MA
  • Joseph O. Mendoza
    Boston University, MA
  • Simone V. Gill
    Boston University, MA
    Boston University School of Medicine, MA
  • Joseph S. Perkell
    Boston University, MA
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA
  • Cara E. Stepp
    Boston University, MA
    Boston University School of Medicine, MA
  • Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication. ×
  • Correspondence to Elizabeth S. Heller Murray: ehmurray@bu.edu
  • Editor and Associate Editor: Amy Neel
    Editor and Associate Editor: Amy Neel×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosody / Speech / Research Notes
Research Note   |   October 01, 2016
Effects of Biofeedback on Control and Generalization of Nasalization in Typical Speakers
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 2016, Vol. 59, 1025-1034. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-S-15-0286
History: Received August 18, 2015 , Revised December 17, 2015 , Accepted January 20, 2016
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 2016, Vol. 59, 1025-1034. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-S-15-0286
History: Received August 18, 2015; Revised December 17, 2015; Accepted January 20, 2016

Purpose The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of biofeedback on control of nasalization in individuals with typical speech.

Method Forty-eight individuals with typical speech attempted to increase and decrease vowel nasalization. During training, stimuli consisted of consonant-vowel-consonant (CVC) tokens with the center vowels /a/ or /i/ in either a nasal or nonnasal phonemic context (e.g., /mim/ vs. /bib/), depending on the participant’s training group. Half of the participants had access to augmentative visual feedback during training, which was based on a less-invasive acoustic, accelerometric measure of vowel nasalization—the Horii oral–nasal coupling (HONC) score. During pre- and posttraining assessments, acoustically based nasalance was also measured from the center vowels /a/, /i/, /æ/, and /u/ of CVCs in both nasal and nonnasal contexts.

Results Linear regressions indicated that both phonemic contexts (nasal or nonnasal) and the presence of augmentative visual feedback during training were significant predictors for changes in nasalance scores from pre- to posttraining.

Conclusions Participants were able to change the nasalization of their speech following a training period with HONC biofeedback. Future work is necessary to examine the effect of such training in individuals with velopharyngeal dysfunction.

Acknowledgments
This work was supported in part by the Deborah Munroe Noonan Memorial Research Fund (awarded to Cara Stepp), National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders Grant DC012651 (awarded to Cara Stepp), and a grant from the Dudley Allen Sargent Research Fund, Boston University, (awarded to Elizabeth Heller Murray). The authors would also like to acknowledge Kate Girouard and Ali Martinson for their help with data analysis.
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